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Restaurant Review – The Tollgate Inn, Holt

Despite having 11 piercings and a little tattoo, I found out today that my fear of needles is alive and well.  I had some travel vaccinations so am now nursing two very sore and aching arms…the things we do for a holiday!

This week, Ian and I fancied trying out a local country pub so drove over to Holt, a village about 5 minutes away from us. A pretty 16th century building, this pub is very picturesque and has a cosy, welcoming atmosphere when you step inside.

There was a good selection of food from the traditional to their seasonal specials and we found it hard to narrow it down to what we fancied.

I have to admit now that I made a bit of a rookie mistake and filled up on my starter meaning I struggled a bit with my main course but the key thing for me was that it all tasted good!

We shared a ‘Picnic Platter’ to start which included a few of my favourite things to have for lunch when the sun is shining. There was a cooked scotch egg in crispy breadcrumbs, a slice of roasted vegetable and goats cheese quiche, homemade coleslaw, sausage roll, homemade tomato chutney, fresh bread and two large slabs of ham hock…you can see why we were full afterwards!

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Although the wooden board looks a bit packed, all elements were very tasty. I especially liked the ham hock (on a piece of bread and covered in the lovely chutney!)

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For our mains, I opted for pork and Ian had the beef.

My pork was a duo of Woolley Farm pork (from the farm over the road!) and included a honeyed pork loin steak and slow roasted rib. It was served with sautéed leeks, fondant potatoes and a mustard sauce.

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The roasted rib was the winner for me – it was so juicy and tender and my only niggle would be that there wasn’t quite enough of the lovely gravy.

Ian had their beef special which included a tender haunch of beef and bone marrow served with black pudding, mashed potato and kale. The bone marrow was absolutely delicious – so rich and beefy and complemented the dark gravy.

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I had to admit defeat when it came to a pudding here but as I was leaving, I did notice a poster up for an upcoming Pudding Night where they will be serving no less than 6 puddings…suffice to say I will be signing up!

We seem to be spoilt for choice for local pubs and this is definitely one to add to our list for good, local and seasonal food.